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The church at Copenbagen bas had | the fruit already gathered, and let it an increase of six members, and br. stimulate us to greater devotedness in Mænster is going to Alborg to baptize the best of causes. I must again call several converts there. The authori- your attention to our tract operations ; ties take at present to notice of their something should be done immediatemeetings.
ly for our assistance, if the present faI leave to-morrow for Brunswick, vorable opportunities are to be imMarburg, and Baireuth, and hope that proved. There is, indeed, a great and at each of these places a Christian glorious work before us in Germany, church will be formed. The Lord is and we need all the help our Amerithus constantly encouraging us, and can brethren can give us. May the every thing bids us to coutinue stead-good spirit of our God influence us to fast and uninoveable in the work of work whilst it is called to-day. the Lord. Let us rejoice together at
SKETCHES OF HINDUISM.
angas, revealed by divine persons, or writ
ten by inspired saints. They treat of asThe following article, containing a brief state tronomy, grammar, prosody, religious rites ment of some of the leading points in Hindu and ceremonies, charms and incantations. mythology, is taken from the Foreign Mission The fourth class consists of the four Upary Chronicle. It is compiled, as the author angas. This is by far the most copious states, from the writings of Duff, Marshman, division. The first Up-anga contains the Heber, Pegg, and others; and gives, we think, Puranas or sacred poems. These treat a more than usually definite and interesting of cosmogony, geography, astronomy, genview of the points presented.
ealogies and exploits of the gods, virtue,
good works, the nature of the soul, and THE GREAT SHASTRA8.—The sacred the means of final emancipation. The secwritings of the Hindus are in the Sanskrit. ond and third Up-angas treat of logic, Western scholars, who have made them- metaphysics, and the essence and modificaselves acquainted with this language, speak tions of spirit. The fourth Up-anga conof it as rich, harmonious, and expressive. sists of the body of laws, by Manu, the The natives of India regard it with a vener son of Brahma, and other sacred personaation that is almost unbounded. Its very ges,- detailing all manner of duties conname implies perfection; and even to the form nected with the worship of the gods, and of the letters they attribute a divine origin, all the possible relations that can subsist calling them the Deva Nagari, or writings between man and man. of the gods. The Sanskrit is not now a The writings now enumerated are usualliving language; although a portion of its ly denominated the GREAT SHASTRAS, life and substance and forni has been trans or books of sacred ordinances, to distinfused into almost all the vernacular dialects guish them from a great many other works of India. We have been at some pains to highly reverenced, but not esteemed divine. prepare the following account of some of These works are in great part composed the sacred writings in this language. in a kind of blank verse or measured phrase.
The first and highest class of their sacred Their number and bulk is not easily desbooks consists of the four Vedas. These cribed. The four Vedas form eleven large are not only the most ancient, but the most folio volumes. The Puranas and two othsacred compositions in the Sanskrit. They er poems contain two millions and a half of are believed to be from eternity, pot re- | lines; whilst an octavo bible in large print vealed through the instrumentality of any contains less than one hundred thousand being, but proceeding direct and entire out lines. These are but a small part of the of the mouth of the creator himself. whole. The longest life would not suffice
The second class consists of the four for a single perusal of the books claiming upa-Vedas.
These were delivered to to be a divine revelation, to direct man in mankind by Brahma and other deities, and the worship of his creator and bis duties to inspired sages. They treat of medicine, his fellow man. music, archery, architecture, and sixty-four How different are these writings from mechanic arts.
the scriptures of the Old and New TestaThe third class consists of the six Ved- ment ! 'The God of all truth is the author
of the obe; the other is from the father of that the worship of one God only, was ies, who was a murderer from the begin- taught in their sacred Scriptures. ning. The one is filled with contradictions, showed very clearly that the impure rewith warratives of folly, obscenity and wick- cords of the lives of their gods were dedness; its pages teach falsehood, and sanc- structive of every thing like morality, and 20 tae violation of every moral precept. the peace and happiness of mankind. But iz law of the other is holy, and the these things are all recorded in their socommandment holy and just, and good.”' called holy books, and in them also is their · Erery word of God is pure; all his com- worship defined and enjoined; and these Dulments are truth.”
books are received as of divine authority. How important it is that the Holy Bible Ram Mohun Roy, indeed, only admitted the haid be faithfully translated into all lan- four Vedas as of divine authority. He conEres, printed, and put into the hands of tended that his early forefathers worshipped cose who are thus ignorant of the true the true and eternal God, and that he had God and the way of salvation through the forsaken the idolatry of Hinduism, as untrees of Christ; that all may read in their worthy of a rational being; but he insisted en tragues, wherein they were born, the in language as strong as that used by the vonderful works of God. To effect this missionaries, that his countrymen were respect the church has now committed to wholly given to this idolatry. “ The truth ber the mighty agency of the press, by is,” he observes, " the Hindus of the presbich bibles and religious tracts may be sent day firmly believe in the real existmaltipäied to meet the increasing wants of ence of innumerable gods and goddesses, eur tenighted fellow men. Let professing who possess full and independent power; Christians, when they pray " Thy kingdom and to propitiate them, and not the true ene," take heed that they neglect not God, are temples erected, and ceremonies the means which God has appointed, for performed.” * « The generality of the Hinthe fulfilment of the glorious results for du community are devoted to idol worship; wäsch they pray.
the source of prejudice and superstition,
and of the total destruction of moral prinHindu MYTHOLOGY.—This is a fruit- ciple, as countenancing criminal intercourse, faj theme, containing the glimmering of suicides, female murder, and human sacrisome fundamental truths,-much of fable, fiees.” It is a melancholy reflection, that extravagance, wickedness, and contradic- this learned and enlightened heathen, with tion. Our limits will only permit a brief the Bible within his reach, esteemed the and condensed statement of the leading preaching of the gospel to be foolishness, points of this mass of confusion and ab- and whilst he contended against the idolasardity.
try of his countrymen, rejected the offers The Hindus are a nation of polytheists of mercy through the cross of Christ. and idolaters. It is true, nevertheless, Although the Vedas contain many truths that the foundation of their system is laid in relation to the true God, yet when we in the belief and assertion of the existence bring together their descriptions of the one of one great, universal, self-existing eternal spirit, we shall find them to be made Spirit
, the origin of all other beings, ani- up of contradictions, metaphysical jargon mate or inanimate, material or immaterial. and absurdity. All natural divine attriIn regard to the Eternal Spirit, their belief butes are ascribed to Brabm. Without is , in many aspects of it, pure Pantheism. beginning or end, that which is, and must His appellation is BRAHM; not to be con- remain, unchangeable; without dimensions; founded with Brahma, who is also one infinite; immaterial, invisible, all powerful, of their principal gods.
all knowing, every where present; and enIt is important that this point be noticed, joying ineffable felicity. Again he is deand fully explained. Missionaries have scribed as without qualities and attributes. been charged with ignorance and a wish to This description is in direct contradiction deceive, when they have described the de- with the former; but then these different grading and abominable practices of Hindu states or modifications of being are not idolatry. But the truth is, the Hindu contemporaneous but successive. How Shastras, while they speak of one God, to then, it may be asked, is he unchangeable ? whom all worship ought to be paid, also No moral attributes are ascribed to him in describe a multitude of other gods, relate any state of his existence. Holiness, justheir actions, good and bad, and direct the tice, mercy, goodness, and truth, form no mode and forms of their worship.
part of his character. About twenty years ago, RAM MOHUN The proper state of Brahm's being is deRor, a learned Brahman, in Calcutta, de- scribed to be that in which he exists wholly nounced the idolatry of his countrymen, without qualities or attributes. When he and attempted to prove from the Vedas, thus exista, there is no visible external uni
He is then emphatically the ONE; | were derived; that the great one became the single and sole entity of the universe; distinctly known as three gods, being one the only possible entity, whether created person and three gods." or nncreated. His unity is so pure, so es Brahma is represented as the creator of sentially simple, as totally to exclude qual- gods and men, and as sharing even the ities or attributes of any kind. It is quite essence of the supreme mind, yet at the evident that this is a description of perfect present day, he is the least esteemrd of all non-existence--of cold and cheerless athe- the Hindu deities. He has neither temples ism. According to this description, in any erected, nor sacrifices offered to lirim, por sepse within the reach of the human under- festivals celebrated to his honor. He is standing, Brahm is nothing. The mind of usually represented as a red or golden colman can form no conception of matter or ored figure, with four heads and four arms. spirit, apart from its properties or attri Vishnu is the preserver. He is reprebutes; yet in this state of entire and total sented of a black or blue color, with four negation, he is described as positively ex
No sacrifices are offered to him; isting, and in the enjoyment of ineffälle he is described as a household god; and is bliss.
extensively worshipped. From this state of repose, after the Siva is the destroyer, and is represented lapse of unnumbered ages Brahm suddenly of a silver color, under various forms, awakes, and breaks the universal silence sometimes with one head and sometimes by uttering the words “ I am.” Dissatis- with five. Although the destroyer be his fied with his own solitariness, he imagines proper appellation, it seems more applicable the form of the universe; this is succeed- to Durga his wife, whose aspect and deeds ed by an act of volition. The process of do indeed combine whatever is most terriproduction is described in the Shastras, and ble. The worship of both is the most obin the writings of their Brahmans, with a scene and debasing that can be imagined, great many contradictions and unintelligible and hence they are the most popular of any explanations; in which are to be found of the Hindu deities. many of the principles of the German tran Durga is represented as black, with four scendental philosophy.
arms, wearing two dead bodies as ear-rings, Brahm, it is said, contains all things with- a necklace of skulls, and a girdle of hands in himself; and there is always the same around her waist. See Missionary Chronquantity of existence whether the universe icle, vol. vij. p. 235. Her altars flow with be in a created or uncreated state. When the blood of goats and other animals; and it is in the latter, Brahm is all; when it is the ancient hooks contain directions for huin the former, the Deity is just partially man sacrifices to this cruel goddess. She unfolded by various degrees of emanation, i has various names. As Kalee she is the which constitute the several forms and or- 1 patroness and protectress of robbers and der of manifested nature. Still all things prostitutes, and the bands of murderers are God. When the energy ceases to op- called Thugs, are her devoted worshippers. erate, all orders of being return, and are Volumes have been written in descripre-united to the fountain whence they I tion of the gods of India. The details, if sprung. Then God alone is all again. all collected, would be of little use. Their Thus the creator is confounded with the forms and the different agencies assigned to creature, or rather there is no creature, all them are as various as the mind of sinful is God.
man could conceive. Great rivers, espeAnother theory is, that all things are il- cially the Ganges, are objects of worship. lusions, like the images in a camera obscu- The cow, the monkey, and the king of ra, or the appearance in a mirror, or the ' birds are their gods. The history of most likeness of the sun reflected from the wa- of their gods is a tissue of vice and villany. ter.
Our limits will not permit us to follow | Thest, licentiousness, lying, and murder, the metaphysical illustrations of this ac are described at large in their sacred books, count of creation, and to most of our read as the employment and the pastime of these ers the subject would have but little inter- godel Wantonness has the sanction of di
vine authority; licentiousness is consecraThe most popular account is, that from ted as religious worship, and the human his own impersonal essence, Brahın drew heart, deceitful above all things and desforth, in some ineffable manner, three dis- perately wicked, finds in their gods a countinct beings, which speedily became invest- terpart suited to its own depravity. ed with corporeal forms. This is the cel Such are the sacred books, and such ebrated Hindu Triad-Brahma, Vishnu, are the objects of worship of one hundred and Siva. Respecting these, their sacred and thirty millions in India. Truly is this books declare that they were originally a land of darkness, as darkness itself; gross united in one essence, and from one essence | darkness upon the people, and the shadow
of death; without any order; and where , majority of these. They are beginning now the light is as darkness. The apostle has to avow it openly; and there are priests, described their condition with the pen of and it is said even bishops, who avow that inspiration, in the first chapter of Ro- they do not believe a word of Christianity, mans.
though as a matter of policy they continue From the abominations of Hindu idolatry, their professions of belief. There has rehow must the heart of the Christian rejoice, cently occurred a developement of a case when he meditates on the God of the Bible, of scepticism which has interested and exas revealed in the Lord Jesus Christ. “God cited this people not a little. Cairis bad so loved the world that he gave his only founded about four years since, an orphan begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on school on the island of Andros. He was him should not perish, but have everlasting aided in the establishment and support of life.”
the school by voluntary contributions in How mournful is the condition of the Greece and in England. He was the sole benighted heathen. Whatever the poor teacher, and lived a most laborious and degraded Hindu may have heard of Brah- self-denying lise, faring at the same board ma, of Vishnu, or Siva, they have never with his two hundred orphan boys, and heard of the true God, and a Savior's love. superintending in person every department And“ how shall they believe on him of of this great establishment. He is a monk, whom they have not heard ? and how shall well educated, of great acuteness of mind, a they hear without a preacher? and how true patriot, having been most active during shall they preach except they be sent?” the war of the revolution, and a republican. “As it is written, How beautiful upon the Recently it has been discovered that he is a mountains are the feet of him that bringeth deist, and that many young men have imgood tidings; that publisheth peace; that bibed, in his institution, most corrupt relibringeth good tidings of good; that publish- gious sentiments. It seems to have been eth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy bis secret intention to establish a new sect, God reigneth.” Then shall the church deistical; and that this was one grand motive arise and shine, her light being come, and in all his extraordinary labors in the cause of the glory of the Lord risen upon her.
education. The Greek synod has taken up the matter. Cairis was brought to Athens in a vessel of war, and conducted by armed soldiers to the meeting of the synod for
examination. In five minutes the place In a letter from Rev. Mr. Benjamin, dated was surrounded by a great concourse of Athens, Dec. 2, 1839, are some observations people, and for fear of violence, be was upon
almost immediately remanded to his conThe political and moral aspect of Greece. said that if he had been kept a half day in
finement on board the man-of-war. It is The opposers of the liberal party have the city there would have been a revolulately succeeded in a measure, which shows tion. He was, without exception, the most that they feel strong in their positions, and popular man in Greece, though at the same are disposed to improve this circumstance. time the most modest and retiring. As he Pharmakides, whom I have before men came out of the synod he was saluted with tioned to you as a distinguished writer in • Long live Cairis!” “ The living virfavor of liberal principles, has been turned tue!” “The second Socrates!" etc. The ont of the office he has long held of secre- enthusiasm of the people was immense, tary of the synod. This is considered by and their rage against the synod without every body a very strong measure on the bounds. The final step in the matter has part of the king. Other things have oc- been to send Cairis to confinement in a curred which show that all the political monastery on the island of Scyathos. tendencies of the times in Greece are of Dr. King, writing from Athens, under the same character.
date of January 28, mentions the discovery In regard to religious matters, I believe of a secret society, called the Philorthodox the Greek mind is more truly awake to Society, wbich was believed to have no them than it has been before for centuries. good designs towards those who were enThe time is at hand when Greek ecclesias- gaged in the intellectual and religious imtics will be forced to support the cause of provement of Greece. The discovery was religion by reason and the word of God. made about the beginning of the year, The existing effects of their deficiency on near the time when their plans were to this point are indeed lamentable. An im- have been carried into effect. The princimense number of young men in the learned pal persons concerned in it, were arrested. prfessions, and in the different stages of (Miss. Herald. study, are deists and atheists—perhaps a
American Board of Comníssloners for we have, so far as China is concerned, anForeign Missions.
other obstacle in the difficulty and poverty
of the Chinese language. Whatever may SINGAPORE.
be said of the written language of China, From a General Letter of the Missionaries (and it is not without its merits, though
they bave been often over-rated,) it canat this station, daled Nov. 16th, 1839, we
not be denied that the colloquial languages make the extracts which follow.
of China are exceedingly difficult of acquiBritish India and Eastern Asia com
sition, and very poor when acquired. We
have had the pleasure of hearing Mr. Dyer pared— Chinese spoken language.
preach in Chinese, and he certainly deA line of distinction, if we mistake not, serves to be called a preacher. Mr. Medis to be drawn between Hindoostan, as a hurst is said to be equally good in the spomissionary field, and Eastern Asia. The ken language. But we know of no others former is open; the latter is for the most who can be called with propriety preachers part closed. Singapore, Malacca, Pinang, in Chinese. Mr. Gutzlaff reads and writes Batavia, a small district in Borneo, Bang- the language with ease and rapidity. Mr. kok, Macao, and Canton, are the only Dyer says that he has studied the Chinese places known to be open to us; and some fourteen years, with great industry, and of these are only partially open. Our with excellent health, and that he considerefforts to establish other stations have ed himself still a learner, especially in the hitherto failed of success. It is to be spoken language. John R. Morrison, Esq., hoped that our bounds are to be enlarged; a person of superior abilities, whose accuand yet it would not be strange if ten years racy in translating from and into Chinese hence our limits should remain the same. has probably not been surpassed, except by Inferences drawn from the progress of some of the Catholic missionaries, and who things in Europe and America would mis- h:as, besides, the advantage of having been lead, rather than aid us, in judging of the born in China, and of having enjoyed the progress of events here. Every thing is in best facilities for acquiring the Canton and motion there; every thing here is stationa- Mandarin dialects, which he speaks better, ry. Such an event as an English governor- it is generally admitted, than any foreigner general in Peking, within a few years, is in Canton or Macao, still is not master of barely possible, but not probable, and, these dialects, and is obliged sometimes to therefore, needs not be prepared for. resort to the wretched jargon, called Canton
Hindoostan is a tried field. It has been English, to make himself understood. partially tried for a century or more, and Persons who have studied the Chinese a more fairly for a generation or two, and it number of years, and who have given only has borne fruit. Eastern Asia is an un a month or two to the Malay (a language tried field, and this is the best we can say about as difficult to learn for conversational of it. For if we say it has been tried, then purposes as the French, except that the must we not admit that the experiment has pronunciation of the French is more diffirather worked against us, since little that cult) can understand and speak the Malay deserves to be called fruit has yet been nearly as well as the Chinese. This is produced ?
true even of those who are successful in Hindoostan has a government which acquiring the tones. Those who get on affords to missionaries not only protection, poorly with the tones will learn to make but indirect, yet powerful encouragement, themselves understood in Malay better by since it is wielding efficiently those many three or four months' study, than by seveinfluences for the elevation of a people, ral years of hard labor devoted to the Chiwhich an enlightened government has at With one year, or at most eighteen command. Eastern Asia, with the excep- months study of the Malay or the French, tion of a few ports, has governments which a person would be better qualified to preach are hostile to us, both directly and indi- in either of those languages, than he would rectly. Even where we are allowed a be in Chinese after ten or fifteen years of residence, the whole influence of govern- diligent and successful study. ment stands in the way of our plans, keep These statements will appear less exing down the people whom we wish to travagant when it is added that the Chinese raise.
spoken language is a less perfect medium In addition to the points already noticed, of communication, than other languages, ao